Shares in RSA Insurance (LON:RSA) have jumped more than three percent in London in today’s session, as the blue-chip group post its full-year results, reporting a rise in profits amid strong performance overseas. The company, which suffered an accounting scandal at its Irish division back in 2013, further noted that the restructuring of its balance sheet was now complete.
As of 13:19 GMT, RSA’s share price had added 3.20 percent to 632.60p, outperforming the broader UK market, with the benchmark FTSE 100 index currently standing 1.02 percent in the red at 7,207.26 points. The group’s shares have added more than three percent to their value over the past year, as compared with about a 1.3-percent dip in the Footsie.
RSA posts rise in profits
RSA announced in a statement today that its underlying earnings per share had climbed 10 percent to 43.5p last year, while the group’s statutory profit under tax had soared to £322 million, from £20 million in the prior-year period. RSA benefitted from strong performance at its overseas divisions, which helped offset poor underwriting figures in the group’s UK/London market business.
The blue-chip insurer declared a final dividend of 13p per share, taking its total payout for the year to 19.6p, up 23 percent year-on-year.
Group starting ‘clean’ year
RSA, which suffered an accounting scandal in 2013 and has since been recovering under chief executive Stephen Hester, who took the helm in 2014, noted today that it had completed the restructuring of its balance sheet.
“We look forward to 2018 as the first clean ‘business as usual’ year since 2012,” Hester commented in the statement. Reuters further quoted RSA’s CEO as saying in a media call that at the end of the current year, the company “should have scope to increase dividends not just by the amount that our profits increase but by some further amount”.